Today, I went to have my Day 3 bloodwork taken. At our review appointment, Dr Abrupt reassured me this was nothing to worry about - repeating the test was standard procedure for anyone about to embark upon a new cycle of IVF. In one of his rare flashes of bedside manner, he informed that it was, 'statistically speaking', highly unlikely that my FSH levels would have risen dramatically since they were last checked in November.
And yet I am worried. Since my first cycle was cancelled, I have been searching for a reason as to my poor response. There is a small part of me that accepts that this may have been because I was either over-suppressed or under-stimulated, in which case I may do better on a shorter protocol/higher dosage. And yet, from the reading I've done, there does seem to be a clear correlation between poor response and diminished ovarian reserve. And so, lying awake at night, I have managed to persuade myself that my ovaries are on their last legs (last week, I was even convinced that I was suffering from perimenopausal hot flushes, until Mr H confessed to having turned the central heating thermostat up!) I am worried that the lab may have made a mistake with my previous tests, thereby lulling me into a false sense of security. I am worried that this test will reveal that my FSH levels have shot up over the past few months. I am worried that, even if my hormone levels are within the prescribed range, I still won't respond to the stims. I am worried about the longer-term effects of taking such high doses of fertility drugs.
When I started out on this process just before Christmas, I was scared at what I was about to put my body through, but I was also relieved finally to be doing something that might actually have brought us closer to having a baby. I wasn't banking on it working first time round, but I was banking on IVF at least being an option for us. But now, I've lost my IVF innocence. I'm going into this cycle with my eyes wide open. Fertilisation reports, transfer, 2wws - at the moment, all of these seem like things that happen to other people. I'm just focussing on making it to retrieval this time round - a few good follicles, two or three mature eggs would do me fine.
My baseline ultrasound is scheduled for 21 April. If everything looks OK then, and my bloodwork is within the normal range, I will begin the treatment itself when I get my next period.